Gold moved modestly higher in Thursday trading as pro-Russian demonstrations took place in Eastern Ukraine and Moscow took a harder line against Kiev, bolstering the metal’s safe haven appeal.
Masked gunman seized control of parliament buildings in Crimea on Thursday, hoisting Russian flags and sending a message that the region remains unstable just days after protestors in Kiev forced Ukraine’s pro-Russian prime minister Viktor Yanukovych out of power. With the Winter Olympic games concluded, Russian President Vladimir Putin has stepped up rhetoric against the removal of Yanukovych. On Wednesday, Putin ordered Russian military forces near the Ukrainian border to conduct military exercises, prompting a sharp warning from NATO leaders against Russian intervention in Ukraine.
Gold futures for April delivery added 0.3% to $1,331.80 per ounce on Thursday, according to CME Group. Gold traded as high as $1,336.40 and as low as $1,324. Bullion closed in London at $1,332, according to BullionVault.
Silver futures for March delivery also rose 0.3% to $21.31 per ounce. Thursday’s high for silver was $21.48, while the low was $20.99.
Metal funds advanced on Thursday.
- The SPDR Gold Shares (GLD) inched up 0.1%.
- The iShares Gold Trust (IAU) rose 0.2%.
- The iShares Silver Trust (SLV) added 0.2%.
Mining ETFs were mixed during the day.
- The Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF (GDX) fell 0.3%.
- The Market Vectors Junior Gold Miners ETF (GDXJ) was flat.
- The Global X Silver Miners ETF (SIL) dipped 0.1%.
Gold stocks trended lower on Thursday.
- Agnico-Eagle Mines (AEM) slipped 0.3%.
- Barrick Gold (ABX) fell 0.4%.
- Eldorado Gold (EGO) declined 1.9%.
- Goldcorp (GG) sank 0.2%.
- Kinross Gold (KGC) rose 0.4%.
- Newmont Mining (NEM) inched up 0.1%.
- NovaGold Resources (NG) climbed 1.1%.
- Yamana Gold (AUY) dropped 1.1%.
Silver mining shares were mixed during the day.
- Coeur d’Alene Mines (CDE) was flat.
- Hecla Mining (HL) added 1.2%.
- Pan American Silver (PAAS) fell 0.9%.
- Silver Wheaton (SLW) added 0.9%.
- Silver Standard Resources (SSRI) slid 0.6%.
As of this writing, Christopher Freeburn did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities. Adrian Ash of BullionVault contributed to this report.